Mary and Fátima: A Modest C-Inductive Argument for Catholicism

Perichoresis 18 (5):55-65 (2020)
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C-Inductive arguments are arguments that increase the probability of a hypothesis. This can be contrasted with what is called a P-Inductive argument. A P-inductive argument is an argument that shows the overall probability of a hypothesis to be more probable than not. In this paper, we put forth a C-inductive argument for the truth of the Catholic hypothesis (CH). Roughly, we take CH to be the hypothesis that the core creedal beliefs found within the Catholic Tradition are true. Specifically, we argue that we would expect the Miracle of Fátima on CH, but, we wouldn’t expect it as much on ~CH. In order to establish this thesis, we first discuss the basics of confirmation theory. Second, we give the historical context of the Miracle of Fátima. Third, we briefly survey and then reject two possible non-supernatural explanations of the apparent miracle. Doing this will help make plausible that the Miracle of Fátima is actual evidence that a hypothesis needs to predict. Fourth, we give the details as to why we should expect the Miracle of Fátima more on CH than ~CH. Finally, we argue that miracles that occur in Protestant contexts, generally don’t carry the same evidential weight for a Protestant hypothesis as the Miracle of Fátima carries for CH.



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Author Profiles

Tyler McNabb
St. Francis University
Joseph Blado
University of Notre Dame

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The existence of God.Richard Swinburne - 1979 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The Existence of God.Richard Swinburne - 1979 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
The Existence of God.Richard Swinburne - 1981 - Philosophical Quarterly 31 (122):85-88.

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